How to make hot spots with layers

A page with hot spots and layered content is fairly easy to make. It’s a way to gain more space for the headline and sell on that beautiful image you have to show to your readers. It’s also attractive and draws your readers in to find out more about the hidden content, consequently spending more time viewing the page.

Since layers are a new concept of our system, we'd like to take some time and explain how they work. Now, imagine having an opening page that can either be a main page or a subpage. Both can have layers attached to them. Thus we’ll just call it a starting page. Transition from the starting page to a layer needs to be evoked by user's action. There’s no way to navigate to the layer by using the standard navigation while viewing an edition. By default, transition from the starting page to a layer is fade-in, as opposed to sliding for the rest of the pages. The layer fades in on top of the starting page. Again, transition from a layer back to the starting page also needs a user action. For layers to function they must be connected with their starting page through shape links.

What is this useful for anyway, you may ask? Well, a lot, is what we would say. If you need additional content displayed on top of the page, which would otherwise make the page crowded if you tried to include everything on it, this is the way to go. When designing it, simply duplicate the starting page and add additional content to it; a pop-up window, for example.

A starting page can have multiple layers attached to it, all you need to be careful about here is the logic of navigation through all the layers. If you forget to connect one layer, readers will never see that content.

Here are some guidelines on how to approach the task of creating additional content. If you want to try this on your own, feel free to do so, if not, all the assets used to make this are available for download here. You can preview the final animation in your welcome edition on page 7.3.


Step 1: Design the page

For this page to work we’ll need a starting page. We’ll continue to work on the same Land Rover page with pulsing buttons for this example, using Adobe InDesign. Since we already have the starting page built, we’ll just duplicate the same page 4 more times. That’s the number of buttons we have on our main page. We’ll add an overlay to all four pages and on top of that create our pop-up content. We’ll include an X on all of them that will serve as a place where we’ll draw our navigation buttons, that will close the pop-up.

We’re now ready to export a PDF with all five pages in it.


Step 2: Upload the PDF

Open Edition Digital and on the dashboard click Create new edition card, and select by uploading PDF. Drop the previously created PDF into the window that opens or click on it to open the File browser, where you’ll be able to browse for your PDF. You will not be allowed to continue until you type in the issue name and select the project where you want this edition to be created. Click next and wait until the file is uploaded and processed. This should not take long as there are only five pages.


Step 3: Ordering pages

Once processing is completed your pages will all open in one horizontal array in the workflow page tab. Make sure you have the Show layers square ticked in the bottom menu otherwise you will not be able to see the created layers. On the second page, click the square in a circle button and a menu will appear. Select the layer option. You will see the thumbnail of the page change position and move under page number one. The page number will change as well. That’s how you know where the page is positioned and also the page’s type. Repeat the process for the rest of the layers.


Step 4: Make buttons

Open the starting page by double clicking on it or clicking on the pencil button that’s hovering on top of it. We are going to create buttons that will be connected with the newly created layers. We will continue our work on the page where we previously made the pulsing buttons. Select the ellipse tool and, while holding the Shift key, create a circle on top of the designated place for links on the page, in our case dots and circles. Using the Shift key will help you draw a perfect circle. 



Step 5: Linking the buttons to layers

Now that we’ve made all the buttons on the starting page, we’re only left with connecting them to all the layers. We’ll select the first circle shape we’ve placed in the work area. In the Actions panel (by default it’s on the right-hand side of the screen) click on the plus for the On click events. This means we’ll be adding an action to the selected button, that will open the layer page we’ve prepared especially for it. We prepared the layers so that layer 1 goes with button 1. Now, in the drop down menu we’ll select the Go to page option, you’ll see another option appear right after we make that selection. Clicking on Pick Page a drop down menu of all pages in the edition will appear. We’ll select the first layer that we need to connect with the button.

Repeat this for the rest of the buttons.

We connected all the buttons to their appropriate layers. What we need to do now is connect the layers back to the starting page.


Step 6: Linking layers to the starting page

In the Design tool, navigate to the first layer. The easiest way to do that is to simply click the Next arrow in the top navigation bar of the tool. The other way is to open the workflow and select the page from there.

We marked all our pop-up content windows with an 'X' in the design to represent the close button. We need to create another shape and attach a Go to page action to it. Like before we’ll add an On click event and from the corresponding drop down menu select the appropriate starting page.
In the same way, all the rest of the layers need to be linked to the starting page.

Voilà! And we’re done!


Save and preview

Check out what you’ve built and make any alterations  that need to be done. Don't worry, any changes you make to it will only be reflected in your own version of this edition. Also, nothing is permanent, so you may change whatever you like.



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